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Old 04-26-2019, 09:31 AM   #1
Satriales
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Join Date: Apr 2016
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Default Confused about what steps to take with agencies

I've contacted the Guild about this but as a non-member I am sure they are busy with bigger fish, so hopefully someone here has some ideas.

Here's the deal: I have relationships with agents at two places known for packaging. Basically an open door. No formal relationship, but the idea is that when there's actual real money on the table I assume (through my manager's assurances) that I will be able to work with one of these agents who is a fan of my work.

Both places are interested in packaging a spec we are taking out. The logistics of this are contorting my brain. Can *I* be a part of a package WITHOUT being repped by either agency? Would I have to first SIGN with the agent, become part of the package, get it sold (assuming this would then qualify for Guild membership) and THEN fire the agent? I know non-agented writers have been given some latitude on this, but the machinations are making my head spin.

And no I haven't talked to my reps about this either because I'm a coward and don't want to look presumptuous in assuming that this thing is a lock to get set up.
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Old 04-26-2019, 09:56 AM   #2
docgonzo
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Default Re: Confused about what steps to take with agencies

I'm in a similar boat as you. Two scripts are out for packaging, and a third will hit the pavement in a few months. Only difference is I'm repped at a mid-tier agency. In talking with my manager about this a few days ago, it is my understanding that my agent is eager to get material out there to sell it, knowing full well clients will fire them. And once this fight is over, whenever that happens, clients will be going back to the agents they fire (unless that agent doesn't want to rep a particular client -- word is they're going to use this as an excuse to cut clients they've been meaning to get rid of, but haven't gotten around to yet.)

So, you did mention having reps. Does that mean you currently have a manager? Just talk to them about it. Be straight up. That's what they're there for. No need to keep things secret from them. And they actually might get pissed if they do find out you're making moves without at least consulting them.
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Old 04-26-2019, 10:10 AM   #3
Satriales
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Default Re: Confused about what steps to take with agencies

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Originally Posted by docgonzo View Post
I'm in a similar boat as you. Two scripts are out for packaging, and a third will hit the pavement in a few months. Only difference is I'm repped at a mid-tier agency. In talking with my manager about this a few days ago, it is my understanding that my agent is eager to get material out there to sell it, knowing full well clients will fire them. And once this fight is over, whenever that happens, clients will be going back to the agents they fire (unless that agent doesn't want to rep a particular client -- word is they're going to use this as an excuse to cut clients they've been meaning to get rid of, but haven't gotten around to yet.)

So, you did mention having reps. Does that mean you currently have a manager? Just talk to them about it. Be straight up. That's what they're there for. No need to keep things secret from them. And they actually might get pissed if they do find out you're making moves without at least consulting them.
Appreciate the response. Yeah I didnít even think of the other stuff that is out for packaging when formulating this post. (Mostly because this one - of the three that are already out there would likely move the fastest)


Yes. Current manager. Not making any moves at all, personally. Heís making the moves. Itís just mostly a conversation I havenít gotten around to with him as there have been more pressing matters. And as smart and tuned in as he is Iím not sure he would have the answers either.

I guess Iíll bring it up when he confirms itís going out ahead of the weekend. Thanks!
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Old 04-26-2019, 03:30 PM   #4
AnyOtherName
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Default Re: Confused about what steps to take with agencies

Quote:
Originally Posted by Satriales View Post
I've contacted the Guild about this but as a non-member I am sure they are busy with bigger fish, so hopefully someone here has some ideas.

Here's the deal: I have relationships with agents at two places known for packaging. Basically an open door. No formal relationship, but the idea is that when there's actual real money on the table I assume (through my manager's assurances) that I will be able to work with one of these agents who is a fan of my work.

Both places are interested in packaging a spec we are taking out. The logistics of this are contorting my brain. Can *I* be a part of a package WITHOUT being repped by either agency? Would I have to first SIGN with the agent, become part of the package, get it sold (assuming this would then qualify for Guild membership) and THEN fire the agent? I know non-agented writers have been given some latitude on this, but the machinations are making my head spin.
Yes, the agency will want to rep you if/when the project goes out, and they'll take 10% of the sale price.

Generally speaking, a big spec sale (actually, the rewrite built into the deal) will get you into the WGA, at which point, yes, you'll have to fire your agents.

If that sounds like a strange set of facts... well, we live in strange times.
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Old 04-29-2019, 06:23 PM   #5
Satriales
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Default Re: Confused about what steps to take with agencies

Quote:
Originally Posted by AnyOtherName View Post
Yes, the agency will want to rep you if/when the project goes out, and they'll take 10% of the sale price.

Generally speaking, a big spec sale (actually, the rewrite built into the deal) will get you into the WGA, at which point, yes, you'll have to fire your agents.

If that sounds like a strange set of facts... well, we live in strange times.
Thank you. Heard back from the Guild and that was the nuts and bolts of it.
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Old 04-30-2019, 02:36 PM   #6
grumpywriter
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Default Re: Confused about what steps to take with agencies

I had a similar situation a few years ago with a TV pilot that was getting packaged via two top agents at two top agencies and I was not repped by either agency (I only have a manager). But my "in" with the agencies was the producer and the director behind the project. It didn't end up getting bought or made but yes, interesting to have your foot kind of in the door to these places through other people.
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